February 2, 2015 / 2:53 PM / 4 years ago

U.S. manufacturing growth holds steady in January: Markit

Robotic arms spot welds on the chassis of a Ford Transit Van under assembly at the Ford Claycomo Assembly Plant in Claycomo, Missouri in this file photo taken on April 30, 2014. REUTERS/Dave Kaup

Feb 2 (Reuters) - The U.S. manufacturing sector expanded in January at roughly the same pace as in December, holding at the slowest rate of expansion in a year’s time, according to an industry report released Monday.

Financial data firm Markit said its final U.S. Manufacturing Purchasing Managers Index came in at 53.9 in January, the same level as in December. A reading above 50 indicates growth in the sector.

The index’s output component rose from December’s final reading, to 55.7 from 54.7.

The index measuring input prices declined in January, with the final reading coming in at 49.1, compared with 52.3 in December. That was first time the index fell below 50 since July 2012, which Markit attributed to declining oil and raw materials prices.

Markit noted in its release that some goods producers noticed “weaker spending patterns among clients in the oil and gas sector,” which caused new business growth to weaken.

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